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Ray’s Weather Center, N.C. Climate Office Recap 2014 Summer: 21st Coolest in 120 Years, Coolest Since 1997

By Jesse Wood

Sept. 10, 2014. With the meteorological summer ending as September began, Ray’s Weather Center and the N.C. Climate Office took a look back at the temperatures experienced this summer.

The N.C. Climate Office noted the mild temperatures from June through August in 2014, which finished as the 21st coolest summer in 120 years. This summer was also the coolest since 1997. Ray’s Weather Center, which covers a dozen counties in Western North Carolina, noted that none of its weather stations recorded a 100-degree temperature – unlike the summer of 2012.

June was on the warm side, especially in eastern North Carolina, but July and August both had mean temperatures well below normal thanks to regular troughiness in the jet stream over the eastern U.S.,” a report from the climate office reads. “The lack of significant heat also meant relatively good air quality all summer. In fact, there were no Code Orange or higher days observed in North Carolina for the first time since ozone measurements started being recorded in 1990.”

In graphics produced by RaysWeather.com, the hottest temperature recorded in the High Country was 87 degrees in Newland, Blackberry, Valle Crucis and West Jefferson and 86 degrees in Zionville and Sparta. Those temps were compared to the top of Sugar Mountain having a high of 76 and Snake Mountain having a high of 75 this summer.

The coolest temps of 2014 in the High Country were 43 at Elk River and Banner Elk and 44 at Beech Mountain and Deep Gap. Every weather station the High Country recorded a temp 50 or lower.

One of RaysWeather.com Facebook friends wondered how Banner Elk recorded a lower temperature than Beech Mountain.

Here’s how Ray’s Weather Center responded: “In certain weather patterns, some of the coolest air can get trapped in valley locations (like Banner Elk) while higher elevations stay a bit milder. That happened a few times this past summer and is why Banner Elk actually got cooler than up on Beech. Neat, huh?”

As for rainfall this summer, the N.C. Climate Office noted that the state had more-or-less average rainfall, which could mean more leaves on the trees as peak colors hit the High Country in mid October.

“Thanks to near-normal rainfall across the state this summer, we shouldn’t see too many dried-out leaves falling from trees before they hit their peak color. That should give some great autumnal arboreal sights throughout the next few months,” the climate office reported.

See RaysWeather.com graphics below:

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The newest version of the RaysWeather.com app is now available for Android phones and soon to come for iPhones and iPads. The update includes all NWS alerts, a refresh button, SplashScreen, and better choices for font sizes. If you are one of the poor weather info deprived folks who don’t have the app, here are the links… iTunes Apps for iPhone and iPad and Google Play for Android.